Mayor angry
over Longford “hatchet job”

The new Mayor of County Longford, Sean Farrell described the Sunday Business Post article on heroin in Longford last weekend as a “hatchet job.”

The new Mayor of County Longford, Sean Farrell described the Sunday Business Post article on heroin in Longford last weekend as a “hatchet job.”

In a video intereview on www.longfordleader.ie, Cllr Farrell described his feeling upon reading Peter Geoghegan’s piece as one of “outrage,” saying that in his estimation the “dark arts of journalism” were used to convey the impression that Longford was a mecca for heroin usage. In reality, he contends Longford’s problem is no worse than many other midland towns.

Referring back to the recent Sunday Business Post article on heroin in Longford town, Mayor Farrell was especially riled by the juxtaposition of a burnt out house and the fire-ravaged cathedral and the “subliminal” message that conveyed. The overall impact of the article was one of a “death by a thousand cuts for Longford.” Farrell also referred to “certain individuals” quoted in the article who “aided and abetted” the author in his piece. Reaction to the Sunday Business Post article was reported on the front page of last week’s Longford Leader. The interview with the new Mayor was filmed in the Longford Leader office on Wednesday morning last and was posted online subsequently.

On the issue of local government reform the Mayor said he expected to see a reduction in the number of councillors representing Co Longford pointing to the disproportionate number of councillors here when set alongside other areas of the country. When quizzed on education, he reiterated his view that many small, two-teacher primary schools would have to be considered unsustainable.

Farrell refused to be drawn on who he regards as the ‘great white hope’ for Fine Gael in the region into the future, acknowledging that the “great red hope”, aka Deputy Bannon, is still going strong.